Since Art Herstory’s September 2019 post about new books focusing on history’s women artists, several new titles have been published. We list those that have come to our attention, quoting the publisher’s description. If you know of other titles that should be on this list, please let us know by comment or by email (Erika@artherstory.net).

Fiction

  • Artemisia, by Alex Connor. Publisher: Fantastic Fiction (2019).

“Three seventeenth-century notebooks are left to Cornelia Stein in London. They tell the story of the most infamous female artist who ever lived. The notebooks interest not only museums but spark a feeding frenzy in the art world, collectors desperate to obtain the priceless artefact—whatever the cost.

And so the lives of two women—one from seventeenth century, one from the twenty-first century—mesh. Artemisia talks of sex, triumph and death, as she fights with her patrons and protects her family, and at the same time Cornelia Stein finds herself in unexpected danger as she defies the male bastions of the art world to ensure Artemisia’s legacy.”

Non-Fiction for Young Readers

“Other than a scattered few, women have not often been portrayed among the world’s great artists, especially in books for young readers. This book begins to correct the omission, with portraits of fifteen daring women from the Renaissance to the present.”

Read reviews of this book in School Library Journal and Kirkus Reviews.

Adult Non-Fiction

“Plautilla Nelli, who was a virtual unknown more than a dozen restorations ago, now comes into her own, as her 21-foot masterwork is finally on public view. Pre-restoration, [the Last Supper‘s] home was in the Friars’ private chambers at Santa Maria Novella, now it is VISIBLE in the museum complex. A publication that spotlights the various phases of our four-year restoration of Nelli’s Last Supper—readers can gain insight on Nelli’s life and times and discover her painterly style as well receive an overview of archival studies and recent discoveries made whilst the painting was ‘eye level’.” 

  • Pre-Raphaelite Sisters, by Jan Marsh and Peter Funnell. Publisher, the National Portrait Gallery, London (2019).

“For far too long the male protagonists of the Pre-Raphaelite movement have dominated accounts of this revolution in British art. This book aims to redress the balance in showing just how engaged and central women were to the endeavour—as the subjects of the images themselves, certainly, but also in their production.”

Radical Women tells an original story of British modernism from the perspective of Jessica Dismorr’s career, along with the women artists—some famous, some lesser-known—she worked and exhibited with … Bringing a web of fascinating connections to light for the first time, this publication provides a fresh interpretation of a pioneering period and the role women played within it.”

A Tale of Two Women Painters: Sofonisba Anguissola and Lavinia Fontana catalogue (English; also available in Spanish). Publisher: Museo del Prado, 2019.

“Catalogue of the exhibition A Tale of Two Women Painters: Sofonisba Anguissola and Lavinia Fontana, on view at the Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid from October 22th, 2019 to February 2nd, 2020.”

More posts on new books about women artists

Ten Intriguing Books About Remarkable Women Artists, guest post by Carol M. Cram

New Books about Women Artists | Sept 2019